Seat Arona

D’you know, I genuinely believe that the collapse of old fashioned shopping is going to end in the fall of society.

Nobody dreams of “going to the shops” any more.

Why would anybody want to do that?

Instead we can sit on our fat backsides without the hassle of moving.

Moving? God, that’s far too much of an effort.

Oh no. Instead, we can look through an internet catalogue, anonymously order up what we want by email – let’s face it, who wants to actually speak to anybody – and it’ll be delivered by van the next day.

That’s a hell of a lot easier than visiting a shop and going to the effort of talking to a real person.

Oh, and it’s also the reason why thousands of shopping centres and established businesses are going bust.

Thomas Cook was a great example. Everybody orders their holidays on-line.

Pubs have made a valiant fightback by attracting new customers with decent food at good prices.

Don’t worry, that’ll soon stop when thousands of Deliveroo-style firms grab hold of the market with instant deliveries of millions of calories of cheap lard and fat.

Picking up a phone is a hell of a lot easier than moving off your sofa.

Nobody can be bothered to actually move any more.

Shops will become as outdated as going to work in an office as everybody tries to escape the millions of non-electric delivery vans polluting the atmosphere to the extent where no one will dare leave home anyway.

The plague of vans on the streets is turning into a tidal wave.

Trouble is, it hasn’t done anything to help the moods of the people driving them.

Other cars are regarded as obstacles blocking the route to the next delivery.

Anything getting in the way of the next paying target should be removed from the road to profit.

That’s why delivery drivers spend all day driving around like nutcases.

Speed limits? They’re barriers to rewards and they need to be eliminated.

How else, for instance, could you explain the lunatic behaviour of the van driver I witnessed in a car park yesterday.

I was following an elderly couple in their Ford Fiesta when Mr I’m In A Hurry tried to reverse out of his car park slot in front of them.

The Fiesta driver stopped and reversed back a little to make room for Speedy Delivery Man, but that wasn’t good enough for him because it meant he had to go slowly.

So what did he do? He stopped his van, leapt out of the driver’s seat, then proceeded to scream at the poor old couple, who must have been terrified.

Mission Threatening accomplished, he jumped back in, slammed his door and drove off in the same nutcase way he was behaving.

Sitting there in my Seat Arona, I felt really sorry for the old couple.

If he’d found himself following me out on the roads God knows what he’d have done.

Probably self exploded, because I drove that car like it was an egg.

Why? Well there was no real need to do so because the Arona is a surprisingly potent 130mph machine that covers the 0-62mph sprint in exactly 8.0s. That’s not hanging around.

Trouble is that now I’ve semi-retired I’m turning into an old driver.

I’m not in a mad rush every time I get behind a steering wheel. I see no sane reason to drive like a bully, burning up expensive fuel, polluting the air, shouting at other “idiots” and getting involved in slanging matches.

I just want to have a nice time, and the Arona is perfect for that.

If you’re in a hurry, it’ll get you where you’re going eventually but, hell, why would I be in a hurry when I leave plenty of time for my journey?

That was why I decided that, for once, I would test out the 1.5-litre Arona’s combined WLTP figure of 48.7mpg to see what I could get.

Well, I discovered that I can drive economically after all.

It’s just a matter of driving around within the Arona’s maximum torque band of 1,500 – 3,000 rpm and remembering to use its six speed gearbox.

Given the state of my memory maybe it was a good thing that the Arona dashboard included a gear change reminder warning.

Anyway, at the end of my week with the car I actually managed to beat, no that’s the wrong word, annihilate, it’s official mpg figure by averaging 52.4mpg.

And no, I didn’t drive it like grandad all the time. Otherwise how could I report that given a push it also handles in the same way that its performance figures suggest.

It’s a great little medium sized spacious small car, no doubt about it.

Seat describe this Spanish designed, Barcelona built, Jack of All Trades as a “compact crossover with an edgy design.”

They also claim that it’s: “Perfect for everyday urban driving and weekend escapes.”

I’m not sure what that means, but I’d like to add that it’s a good looking, practical motor with a stylish interior, an excellent 71cm (28in) deep boot that extends to a flat and surprisingly deep 140cm (4ft 7in).

I also failed to find out what Seat mean by saying its design is “edgy” but it’s definitely stylish.

The interior is a great mix of plush, well stuffed, soft fabric sports seats, lots of red stitched trim, a huge piano black sat nav and radio screen, soft touch and mottled dashboard and door faces, four excellent sized door pockets and map pockets that double as wine bottle carriers on the back of both front seats.

There’s a choice of four different driving modes, all illustrated with colourful images of pavement sided tarmac roads (normal), ones with race track sides, (sport and personal) or the petal trimmed eco mode that I chose.

In a week in which the world was dominated by Greta Thunberg leading youngsters protesting about global warming there seemed no other choice.



SEAT Arona FR Sport 1.5 TSI EVO 150PS 6-speed manual.

REAR MIRROR MONSTER: Stand out three-bulb driving lights below four-bulb projector headlights, added to two separate black honeycomb style grilles and the high stance of an SUV give the Arona a distinctly one-off, but classy look. No monster, but definitely smart.

BACKSIDE BEAUTY: Rear end comes in what appear to be eight different horizontal sections which make it far too complicated to be pretty, but it is, at least practical, which is the main point of a boot.

PLAYTIME PLEASER: Touchscreen 8-inch sat nav with speed limit and 2D or 3D display, twin zone climate control, adaptive cruise control with speed limiter, rear parking sensors, trip computer, heated front seats, heated folding door mirrors, heated washer jet nozzles, auto wipers and lights, digital cockpit, chrome roof rails, 18-inch black and silver 10-spoke alloys, DAB stereo with Bluetooth, aux, Apple CarPlay, Android Auto and Mirror Link.

NAUGHTY NIGGLES: Huge full size spare wheel holder under the boot is big enough for a tractor tyre, never mind even a space saver. Instead it emptily echoes around just a useless blow and go kit inside it.

TASTY TOUCHES: Interior lights under the front door window edges glow red at night.

FAST OR LAST: Arona can be anything you want, from a smooth and tidy-handling quick car to a remarkably fuel efficient quiet cruiser.

WONGA WONDA: Great value for money but is it clean enough for Greta and her Save The World Girls?

WOULD CHANTELLE LIKE IT? No way. Far too mumsy for proud to be single Chantelle.

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